Have you ever found a hidden spot and promised yourself that you would return?
Admittedly, no place is ever truly hidden. But the amount of effort to find it is usually a direct ratio to the number of visitors. On our first visit to Florence Lake, California, we found a remote campground that would be perfect to canoe into. It was off the main trail and hidden from the water.
First problem; we didn’t have a canoe. Five years later, I had inherited the family canoe and driven it cross country. Second, the lake is seasonally drained and we needed water. Third, problem was that it was summertime and it was rare to get days off together. So, when everything came together in July, we grabbed the opportunity.
As the puzzle came together and reality outpaced the dream. To be out alone, paddling the calm summer waters of Florence Lake was amazing. The site was the perfect vantage to see the extent of the lake at sunrise and sunset. Hiking into the center of the Sierra’s was a quick paddle away.
No trip is an adventure until something goes wrong. Our adventure came on the final morning. As we packed to leave, an early thunderstorm came rolling through from the east. Our dream became Sheba’s nightmare as she couldn’t make herself small enough hiding in the tent.
The excitement started when, after the thunderstorm had exited to the west, we loaded the canoe and pushed off only to find the storm had reversed direction and was blowing back in. We were now racing the storm.